How-to: Change Windows 7 User Access Control

How-to Change Windows 7 User Access ControlUser Access Control (UAC) in Windows Vista was a good idea poorly executed; the permissions dialog popped up so often, we all got irritated and clicked OK without reading the details of the request. You could turn UAC on or off. That was it.

Windows 7 and Server 2008 refines that, introducing additional User Account Control (UAC) settings that are similar to the Internet Explorer security zone model. Log on as a local administrator, not only can can enable or disable UAC notifications, but choose when to be notified about changes to your computer…

I wasn’t entirely Vista’s fault, since many software programs did not support UAC when it was first introduced, so those applications failed and created a bad user experience. Developers now understand the interaction with UAC now, so it is a much better experience in Windows 7.

In Windows 7, users can now select their ‘comfort level’ in UAC notifications through an improved the user interface providing more relevant and additional information. The default user account created during the installation in Windows 7 is still a protected administrator but with a different UAC setting: the default user is be prompted only when programs try to make changes but not by the user themselves.

To adjust the UAC settings in Windows 7:
Open User Account Control Settings, type UAC in the Start Search box, then click Change User Account Control settings in the Control Panel window.

Move the slider to the notification setting you want, then click OK.

There are four UAC settings in windows 7 that you can choose:

  • Always notify: select this setting if you always want to be notified when programs try to install software or make changes to your computer
  • Notify me only when programs try to make changes to my computer: select this setting if you want to be notified only when programs try to make changes to your computer but don’t want to be notified when you make changes to Windows settings.
  • Notify me only when programs try to make changes to my computer (do not dim my desktop): select this setting if you want to be notified only when programs try to make changes to your computer without the desktop being dimmed and don’t want to be notified when you make changes to Windows settings.
  • Never notify me (Disable UAC): choose this if you never want to be notified when programs try to install software or make changes to your computer and never want to be notified when you make changes to Windows settings.

It works much better and I’m hardly getting any UAC alerts in Windows 7, mostly the expected alerts when installing software or changing system-wide settings. AJS

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